Lewis-Clark State cross country and track coach Mike Collins has announced the signing of two more talented female runners that will compete for the Warriors in the 2013-14 season.
The addition of Kea Paton (Cashmere, Wash.) and Rachel Cundy (Lakewood, Wash.) give the Warriors six women’s runners signed for next season.
Paton (pictured left) competed scholastically at Cashmere High School in North Central Washington, a top Class 1A program, and was a teammate of Angela Knishka, another of LCSC’s incoming recruits.
For the Bulldogs, Paton burst on the scene as a freshman, taking seventh place at the WIAA state cross country championships and third place in the 3200 meters at state track in the spring.
After her freshman year, she qualified for the USATF cross country nationals in Reno, Nev. Injuries cost her a sophomore season, but she rebounded as a junior to be named first team All-Caribou Trail League and participate in the state cross country meet.
She repeated those achievements as a senior, and was also awarded the CTL’s Sportsmanship Award.
Paton participated in National Honors Society, Future Business Leaders of America, Jazz Ensemble, Concert Choir and Key Club, in addition to her athletic endeavors.
She also enjoys water sports at Lake Wenatchee near her family’s home, and was a competitive ski racer – in both Alpine and Nordic disciplines – for most of her youth. She is still active on the Mission Ridge Ski Team as a coach for younger racers.
“We are very excited about Kea. We believe that she has a huge amount of potential that not a lot of other coaches realize. She has had some injury problems in high school that answers for were found just recently,” Collins said. “Basically she was running on extremely limited training. But now that she is healthy and we know how to keep her healthy, we think she is going to surprise a lot of people, including herself, as to what she is capable of. She epitomizes everything we are looking for here at LC State when it comes to commitment to the team, to her school and maintaining a well-balanced life.”
Cundy (pictured right) competed for Everett Community College last season after a four-year varsity career at Lakewood (Wash.) High School.
At Everett, Cundy helped the Trojans to the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges team cross country championship in 2012 with a fifth-place finish at the NWAACC Championships. This performance earned her All-America honors and she was voted Most Inspirational by her teammates.
At Lakewood, Cundy placed in the top 15 in each of her final three years at the Class 2A state cross country meet.
In track, Cundy earned four varsity letters for the Cougars and graduated in 2012 as the school’s record holder in the 3200 meters. She qualified for districts in each of her first three season before finally breaking through to state as a senior.
Cundy placed ninth in both the 1600 and 3200 meters as a senior, and earned Most Inspirational the Coaches’ Award from her team.
Outside of athletics, Cundy was a three-year member of National Honors Society and served as secretary during her senior year. She was also involved in the Medical Explorer Group for three years, serving as its vice president as a senior.
“We are excited about having Rachel here this next fall. She has only been at the community college for one year, so we will get the opportunity to work with her for the next four years. She received some great coaching at Everett and we hope to continue her progression. She comes into the program with a good number of quality returners and we have already signed a number of quality young ladies and we believe Rachel is only going to add to the level of expectation and performance from all of the girls,” Collins said.